Rhubarb cake is a cake made with a crumbly crust, fresh rhubarb, and a delicate meringue topping. You will love the sour-sweet combination that the rhubarb and the meringue give to these bars.
The rhubarb is up in the garden so it is time to make this rhubarb dessert. It is kind of a tradition in my family. Every spring for as long as I can remember this recipe has been pulled out of the recipe box and made by either my mom or myself.
I hope that it becomes your family’s favorite also.
- Do you have to peel rhubarb? I know that some people do not take off the outer thin skin, but I like to remove it. I find that it can be stringy if you leave it on.
- To remove the thin skin all need to do is start at the end of the stalk and with a pairing knife start by pulling the thin layer of skin from the stalk and just keep pulling it. If the skin breaks start where it ended.
- When cutting the rhubarb cut the piece about one-half inch long to assure that they rhubarb bakes completely.
- Have the egg whites at room temperature before you make the meringue.
- The meringue can be made while the bars are baking. Don’t worry about waiting until the filling is baked.
Steps for making rhubarb cake
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 9 by 13-inch pan.
Combine the flour, baking powder, 2 tablespoons sugar, and nuts in a medium bowl. Add the shortening and cut into the flour mixture until it is completely worked in.
Add 2 egg yolks and mix in until well combined with the flour mixture.
Pat the crust into the prepared baking pan. Place the crust in the preheated oven and bake for 10 minutes.
While the crust is baking prepare the filling for the cake. Peel and chop the rhubarb and set aside. Mix the remaining egg yolks with 1 1/2 cups of sugar, 5 tablespoons of flour, and vanilla. Add the sugar mixture to the rhubarb and mix until combined.
Once the crust has baked for 10 minutes remove from the oven and top with the rhubarb mixture. Place it back in the oven and bake for another 30 to 35 minutes.
While the filling is baking make the meringue. In a medium bowl add the 4 eggs whites and 3/4 cup of sugar and beat with an electric mixer until soft peaks form. Add the vanilla and beat until stiff peaks form.
Once the filling is done baking remove from the oven and top with the meringue and put back in the oven and bake for another 10 to 15 minutes or until the meringue is golden brown.
How should you store this cake?
Refrigerate it for 2 to 3 days. Keep it in an airtight container. The meringue will start to break down, but the cake will still be good. It is best to eat it when it is freshly made, just like any dessert with a meringue topping.
What is rhubarb?
Rhubarb is actually a vegetable but it is usually found in sweet desserts. It is best usually in the springtime when the plant first comes up and the stalks are tender.
Check out these are dessert recipes:
- 1 3/4 cups flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 2 tablespoon sugar
- 2 egg yolks
- 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons shortening
- 1/2 cup finely chopped nuts I used pecans, but walnuts are great
- 3 to 4 cups cut rhubarb
- 2 egg yolks well beaten
- 1 1/2 to 1 3/4 cups sugar
- 5 tablespoons flour
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 4 egg whites
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- Take the dry ingredients and add them to a medium bowl, mix until blended. Cut in the shortening, then mix in the egg yolks. Pat the crust into a greased 9 by 13-inch pan bake for 10 minutes in an oven that has been preheated to 350 degrees F.
- While the crust is baking prepare the filling. Add the rhubarb that has been cut into pieces into a large bowl. Beat the eggs with a fork and add to the rhubarb Add the sugar and flour and mix well, mix in the vanilla. Once the bars have been removed from the oven, pour the rhubarb mixture over the hot crust. Place it back into the oven and bake for an additional 30 to 35 minutes until the rhubarb is tender and the mixture is set.
- While the filling is baking take the egg whites and 3/4 cup of sugar and beat with an electric mixer. Once the egg whites form a soft peak add the vanilla and continue to beat until stiff peaks form.
- Remove the bars from the oven after they have been baked for the 30 to 45 minutes top with the meringue. Place the bars back into the oven and bake an additional 10 to 15 minutes or until the meringue is a golden brown.
- It is best to peel the rhubarb since the outer layer of the rhubarb can be stringy.
- The bars are best when eaten fresh, but they can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 2 to 3 days.
- I do not recommend freezing these bars.
- Use room temperature egg whites for the meringue.
This recipe was originally published on May 11, 2012. It has been updated with new content and pictures on May 14, 2020.